Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you sell your home!
1. Decide when to sell. In real estate, timing can influence your home’s selling price. Factors like how quickly you need to sell, whether it’s a buyers or sellers market and seasonality all play a role in your home’s final selling price.
2. Find a realtor who is right for you. The realtor who helped you buy your home is a good place to start. They already know your home and they know you, so you’ll be saving precious time. You can also look for names on “For Sale” signs in your neighborhood or ask your friends and family. Make sure to interview two or three candidates and choose the one you like best.
3. Sign a Listing Agreement. This authorizes your realtor and their brokerage to market and sell your home. It will define the legal relationship between you and the real estate brokerage and also set a time limit for your realtor to sell your home.
4. Determine your home’s asking price. The right asking price will attract buyers and pay you a maximum return. Setting a price too low means you could miss out on thousands of dollars. Setting a price too high, however, will scare away buyers. Your goal is to find fair market value.
5. Add some specialists to your team. Similar to when you bought your home, it’s essential to have a notary public or a lawyer handling all the various documents that change hands, making sure your best interests are being protected at all times.
6. Prepare your home for sale. First impressions matter. Now is the time to see your home through a buyer’s eyes: get rid of the clutter, clean and repair as much as you can, within reason. Keep in mind at all times the cost of all your improvements versus the potential financial return.
7. Let your realtor do what they do best. Your home has never looked so good and now it’s time for your realtor to market it to potential buyers. This happens with a “For Sale” sign, open houses, newspaper ads, a listing on the MLS and, of course, through your realtor’s relationship with other realtors.
8. Prepare your finances. Will the buyer “assume” your mortgage or are you “discharging” it? If you’re buying a new home, is your mortgage “portable”? What taxes are involved? These are important questions to ask your realtor, your mortgage lender and your notary public or lawyer.
9. Receive an offer. Although your realtor will walk you through the process, be prepared for some stress. You will see every offer, since it’s required from your realtor. You will have three options: you can accept, you can reject or you can “sign back” or “counter”. Ask your realtor what these terms mean. Good luck on negotiating!
10. Close the deal. You were successful and have drafted a legally binding agreement. Are you done? Not quite yet. Contact your lawyer or notary public, your lending institution and consult your realtor. Immediately start satisfying any conditions of the agreement that require action on your part. On the closing day, your lawyer or public notary will finalize all the details and give you a cheque for the net proceeds.